NBA analyst throws cold water on Bulls’ Lonzo Ball returning to form next season

Fans of the Chicago Bulls holding out hope that star Bulls floor general Lonzo Ball might finally return to form after an extended, multi-season absence due to knee injury won’t be pleased to hear that NBA Dot Com’s Sam Smith has reservations about such an outcome.

“I’m not optimistic about Ball, though we all hope he can play again,” wrote Smith on the Chicago point guard’s prospects to return to the court at a high level next season. “But if he can come through yet another surgery, it’s actually unfair to expect him to return to a high level of play after basically not playing for three years.”

“And the way it’s sounded almost learning to walk again,” added Smith. “I do believe he will play in the NBA again, but it seems a lot to expect it to be next season to the point you look at it like him in 2020.”

This is not to say that he will be a useless player, either — but if Ball does make it back on the court next season, it’s likely best to cut him a whole lot of slack in the early going.

Story originally appeared on Lonzo Wire